Coop Sweden: reshaping the food industry with technology

Date : 19 February 2020

Coop Sweden is using technology to help drive its sustainability initiatives and customer service.

Global sustainability mission

Coop is launching tech accelerator, Bloomer, to target technology startups who have developed solutions for changing the food system. The solutions should be economical and environmental.

Helping the planet…

Bloomer has the power to improve or replace current technologies, change consumer behaviour, establish new and efficient industry practices, open new markets and help reshape the food industry.

…With economical solutions

Solutions will look to resolve issues such as climate change, deforestation and the loss of biodiversity. This can include the circular economy and zero waste, sustainable personalised nutrition, GHG minimizing, last mile (transportation), soil to table traceability and edutainment.

Coop will provide access to its services

Jessica Wolf, senior strategic business developer, says: “We do have a lot to offer in terms of our rich knowledge and data, our 817 stores and online channels – assets which could be very valuable for start-ups and other large companies and for innovating together with them.”

Coop will offer companies unique access to its market and data, customisable programmes, handpicked mentors, office space with access to events and sessions and the option to receive SEK250,000 (US$26,000). The retailer has allocated SEK10m (US$1.0m) for the programme, which will select eight start-ups in its first year. 

Creating a virtual assistant for the customer experience

Coop has teamed up with a UK Artificial Intelligence lab, EBI.AI, to create the ‘world’s most advanced grocery AI assistant.’

Making shopping easy with AI

The assistant, Cooper, will launch in spring 2020. Coop hopes the AI will ease the shopper’s in-store experience and provide excellent customer service. Cooper will work by understanding customer’s dietary needs, deliver recipes, and nutritional and loyalty scheme information. In the future the AI will handle all aspects of customer engagement.

The company has a commitment to customer service, as Coop Sweden chief digital officer Amer Mohammed, states: “Coop wants to build a level of customer experience that is unparalleled in the Swedish retail marketplace. The work that EBI.AI is doing for us gives us a tool to build strong relationships with our customers and support them with an important part of their daily life.”